Don't fancy the Great North Run this year? Why not try these alternative charity runs across the North East?

The Great North Run is a major event in the region’s calendar, but there are so many more ways to get involved in community runs across 2022.

Great North Run 2021

The famous half marathon returns again this year but there are plenty of different routes throughout the North East which allows participants to raise money for charity. Whether someone has done the famous course too many times to explain or simply doesn’t want the fanfare of the Sunday morning in September, there are lots of alternative options to choose from.

The first iconic moment of the Great North Run coes as participants head over the Tyne Bridge into Gateshead and the Tyneside town is hosting its own half marathon again this year. On Saturday May 1 the Gateshead Half Marathon will start and end at the International Stadium with the route predominantly clinging to the south bank of the river. Participants will be able to run a route which provides fantastic views of the Gateshead Millennium Bridge, Sage Gateshead, Baltic art gallery in addition to the Tyne and Swing bridges.

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Early bird entry for the half marathon remains open and is priced at £28 and includes chip timed results, food and drink as well as a medal upon completion with event t shirts costing an additional £8. The organisers also run a 10k route for those not willing to run a full half marathon with early bird entry for the shorter distance costing £26.

Another of the region’s largest half marathons comes from Sunderland, where the city’s City Run Weekend comes a week after Gateshead’s. Saturday 7 May will see the 5k event take place on and around the Northern Spire Bridge, while the following Sunday morning sees roads across the city centre closed for the 10k and half marathon runs which see participants start next to the new City Hall before making their way over the Wear and towards Roker.

Entries for the Sunderland runs are open now, with runners affiliated with running clubs able to receive a £2 entry discount from the regular £37 fee. The 10k run has the same affiliation discount with a maximum cost of £27.50 and 5k participants will pay £15.

Heading slightly further south, The National Trust have teamed up with Trial Outlaws to stage the Durham Coastal half marathon on July 24. The tough 13.1 mile route follows the stunning coastline of country Durham, starting overlooking Blast Beach near Seaham and snaking down to Crimdon Beach. Entirely off-road, this isn’t a route for the faint of heart and entry is available now for £37 with discounts for members of running clubs.

Those who are already run-ready can take a look at two events coming up this February with the Run Nation Valentines Day 10k in Newcastle on 13 February and the Winter Warmer runs on Saturday February 5 around the city’s Exhibition Park and Town Moor.

The Valentine’s Day 10k offers a simpler route with minimal elevation throughout the course at a cost of £24 for non affiliated runners or £22 for affiliated participants while the Winter Warmer runs take the form of 5k, 10k and half marathon routes to raise money for Shelter. Entry costs between £20 and £22.